EC announced LS polling dates
The Election Commission of India has announced the polling dates for the upcoming 2019 Indian General Elections for Lok Sabha in the months of April and May. The task appears to a mammoth exercise considering several challenging factors related to handling logistical, security and manpower requirements, VVPAT/EVM management, EC’s efforts to prevent untoward incidents and also the new challenge of monitoring social media to prevent the spread of fake news.
It is welcome to know that perhaps for the first time the Election Commission has appointed a nodal committee of experts i.e. Media Certification and Monitoring Committee to monitor social media activities during the entire period of the election process. The prominent role of the Internet and Mobile Association of India in bringing up the code of ethics to monitor penetrating online content/campaigns will be a relevant factor. Many experts are also eager to know the detailed methodology adopted and the outcome measurement of such an online monitoring activity perhaps implemented only for the first time. It is also given to understand that the committee will look into monitoring social media ads, the spread of fake news and to enforcement of declaration of expenditure incurred on social media ads.
Further, the newly created committee should also look into the menace of ‘virtual newsroom’ during the election process. The electronic media has of late invaded even the ‘sacred’ polling booths capturing live moments and thereby creating a nuisance to both the voters and polling officials. Seamless coverage of polling booth right from the commencement of polling process, live interviews and opinions of people after casting ballot and display of ‘voter thumbs’ has created a needless distraction to the viewers while reporting live from virtual newsrooms.
The Committee should further look into streamlining excessive and needless live coverage by TV channels near the polling booths and should only encourage necessary positive outcomes during the voting process, even inside the ‘virtual newsrooms’.
Varun S D
Best Woman Cricketer — Mithali Dorai Raj
Mithali Dorai Raj was born on December 3, 1982. She is an Indian cricketer and the Captain of the Indian Women’s Cricket Team in Tests and ODI. Often regarded as one of the greatest batswomen to have ever played the game, she is the highest run-scorer in Women’s International Cricket and the only female cricketer to surpass the 6,000 run mark in WODIs. She is the first player to score seven consecutive 50s in ODIs. Raj also holds the record for most half-centuries in WODIs. In June 2018, during the 2018 Women’s Twenty20 Asia Cup, she became the first player from India (either male or female) to score 2,000 runs in T20Is, and also became the first woman cricketer to reach 2,000 WT20I runs.
Habit of taking credit is hard to die!
A brawl between the BJP MLAs and MPs during district planning committee meeting held at Sant Kabir Nagar in Uttar Pradesh is quite disgraceful. The cause of such brawl was the absence of their name on corner-stone laid for construction of a road in a program. Development work is carried out of money recovered from citizens by way of taxes; even then, insisting for mentioning own names and having a fight over it, is a sign of selfishness. People will get a new facility by starting such development work; so should one be happy about it or fight because own name is missing? What kind of behaviour is this? Such behaviour deserves not nominal admonition but severe action against such elected representatives for their irresponsible behaviour. Why don’t they understand that if they pay more attention to be sincere and honest elected representatives, people would remember them even though their name was not written anywhere; but they are doing little work and expecting a lot in return? The elected representatives should serve the people, instead of expecting appreciation in return!